Recognize Your Symptoms

As you learn to manage your heart failure with the MAWDS plan, you'll soon be aware of how important YOU are in maintaining your health. The last component of the MAWDS plan highlights your responsibility to recognize your heart failure symptoms and take appropriate action.

What if my symptoms become worse?

It's your job to monitor your symptoms and communicate with your healthcare providers about any changes. This way, they can make any necessary adjustments in your treatment - before your symptoms become too severe. This can prevent unnecessary trips to the hospital.

What if I have no symptoms?

It's possible to have heart failure without symptoms such as fatigue or shortness of breath. Your lack of symptoms does not mean that you can ignore your diagnosis and treatment plan. Instead, like all other heart failure patients, you need to follow every aspect of your treatment plan. This includes taking prescribed medications to prevent the progression of your heart disease.

Dear Diary...

Use your Intermountain Heart Failure Self-Care Diary to help you monitor your symptoms and keep you on the right track with every aspect of your MAWDS plan. Even if you don't notice any symptoms, continue to follow your MAWDS treatment plan faithfully.

To help you monitor your condition - and prevent a bad situation from becoming worse - use this Heart Failure Action Plan. Your Action Plan divides your symptoms into three zones. Use your Intermountain Heart Failure Self-Care Diary to record your zones every day.

Heart Failure Action Plan

Go (Green) - Maintain Therapy

  • Feeling well
  • Breathing is easy
  • Weight is stable
  • Symptoms are stable

Keep up the good work! Follow MAWDS every day!

Caution (Yellow) - Step Up Therapy

  • Not feeling well
  • Weight is up 2 or more pounds in one day or up 5 pounds over your target weight
  • Noticeable swelling or bloating
  • Some difficulty breathing with activity and at night
  • Symptoms are worsening

Call your healthcare provider to find out how to prevent symptoms from becoming severe.

Alert (Red) - Get Help Now

  • Breathlessness or chest heaviness at rest
  • Weight is up more than 5 pounds in one day
  • Fainting
  • Symptoms are severe

Call your healthcare provider or go directly to the emergency room. DO NOT try to treat this yourself.

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